PwC beefs up sustainability services with new ESG Advisory Group

01 September 2021 3 min. read
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The country’s largest accounting and consulting firm PwC has established a new ESG Advisory Group, beefing up its sustainability services to clients. 

The new practice will work directly with PwC’s clients, advising them on the development of ESG strategies, and assisting them with implementing their roadmaps and plans. “Our new ESG Advisory Group is one key component of our landmark new global strategy The New Equation, which responds to fundamental changes in the world, including climate change,” explained PwC Australia Chief Operating Officer Liza Maimone.

According to PwC’s latest global CEO Survey, climate change is among the top concerns of CEOs worldwide, with the risks of climate change able to disrupt business and supply chains. Meanwhile, leaders from across the boardroom are increasingly focusing on sustainability goals, in part due to a major consumer and media movement favouring companies that take ESG seriously.

PwC establishes an ESG Advisory Group

“A positive and enduring ESG transformation right across the value chain and wider economy is needed for organisations, government and social enterprise to respond appropriately to the climate change risk and drive future prosperity for people and the planet,” said Maimone. “Our ESG Advisory Group will help shape the positive impact PwC can have on the ESG revolution.” 

The new group will be led by highly-credentialed experts in the field, with the trio of Greg Bourne, Judy Slatyer and Fiona Reynolds named as inaugural members.

Greg Bourne has worked at the nexus of climate change, energy business and policy for more than 30 years. He was a special advisor to UK Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher on energy and transport, and, as Regional President of BP Australasia, was integral in BP’s transition from British Petroleum to Beyond Petroleum. He was CEO of WWF Australia, a non-executive director of Carnegie Wave Energy, and is a former chair of the Australian Renewable Energy Advisory.

Judy Slatyer has a wealth of experience in corporate, government and not-for-profit settings. She is a former CEO of the Australian Red Cross, global COO of WWF, and CEO of Lonely Planet. She is a member of the Organising Committee for the Climate Leaders Coalition, and a member of Chief Executive Women. 

Fiona Reynolds is currently living abroad in the UK, where she is CEO of the UN-supported organisation, Principles for Responsible Investment, which collectively represents more than $130 trillion in assets under management. She is a former CEO of the Australian Institute of Superannuation Trustees, and has been a member of the UK Government’s Green Finance Taskforce. In 2018, she was named by Barron’s magazine as one of the world’s 20 most influential people in sustainability. 

The trio will help PwC provide an “outside in perspective” to solving ESG issues, and will guide an internal team of PwC consultants and accountants who specialise in sustainability strategy, transformation and delivery. 

The ESG Advisory Group will also play a role internally, challenging the professional services firm to ensure its own ESG activities meet the objectives set in its The New Equation strategy. 

The announcement comes shortly after PwC was invited to join the Climate Governance Initiative Australia Working Group, which is the Australian chapter of the Climate Governance Initiative of the World Economic Forum (a prestigious global think tank).

With revenues of $2.6 billion, PwC is Australia’s largest accounting and consulting firm.